Friday, July 15, 2016


15th July, 2016

About 80 people were massacred yesterday, Thursday 14th July, 2016 during the annual Bastille Day celebration when an explosives-laden truck drove into crowds of people watching fireworks display in Nice, France.      

The Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC) strongly condemns this attack. Such a gory scene could only be enacted by barbaric and sadistic elements whose only personal assets are their twisted minds. They do not deserve to live among sane human beings.

We are saddened by this unfortunate incident. Our hearts go to the families of the victims and we pray for the quick recovery of those injured by the lunatic attacker. We express unreserved solidarity with the government and the good people of France in this hour of grief.

We affirm that no human being has the right to take the lives of fellow homo sapiens. The Glorious Qur’an forbids the killing of any creature of the Adamic chromosome unless a competent court of law passes a death sentence on such a person (6:151). It also describes the killer of a single person as a destroyer of the whole of humanity while anyone who saves the life of a single person is likened to someone who saves the whole world (5:32).

Without pointing accusing fingers at anyone at this early stage, and without jumping into any conclusion regarding the authors of this dastardly act, we are inclined to take proactive measures in the face of this ugly development.

In view of recent attacks on Western targets, subsequent claims of responsibility by the Islamic State (ISIS) and threats of more attacks on the West, we advise Nigerian Muslims to avoid traveling to Western countries until further notice.

In particular, we are constrained to place an indefinite caveat emptor on trips to the West by Islamic scholars. Our decision is informed by several reports of traumatic experiences faced by Islamic scholars who travelled to Western countries in the past five years. They were subjected to harassment and intimidation at the airports of those Western countries.

The immigration officials of those countries also infringed on the privacies of visiting Islamic scholars by compelling them to open messages in their cell phones and emails. They delayed them for hours or days in uncomfortable environments. The abominable policy of rendition is equally condemnable.

This implies that the whole West now assumes that every Islamic scholar is either a terrorist, a sympathizer of terrorists or a potential recruitment sergeant while anyone who bears a Muslim name must be stereotyped. We frown at this attitude. It is hostile and counterproductive. Stigmatisation of a class of human beings reverses the engine of civilization.

We advise the West to desist from the act of judging 99.9% of the world’s Muslim population by the actions of an infinitesimally small group of misled individuals.

While we denounce the unIslamic, criminal, divisive and inhuman messages of extremist groups who ask Muslims to attack citizens of the West and their targets, we call attention to the Aristotelian theory of ‘causality’ where effects are natural consequences of their causes. There is an urgent need for the West to review its policy in Muslim countries like Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Afghanistan, etc. The casus belli of the turmoil in those countries has been laid squarely on the doorsteps of the West.

Analysts have called attention to the massive devastation of Muslim countries. They see terrorism as mere smoke. In their search for the fire which caused the smoke, they refer to a symbiotic relationship between the crisis in the Middle East and terrorism in general. We advise the West to extinguish the fire which has been responsible for the smoke of terrorism. Justice is the soul of peace.

We appeal to aggrieved extremist elements all over the world to sheath their sword. Revenge is a square peg. Justice is a round hole. The two cannot go together. Qur’an chapter 41 verse 34 (Surat Fussilat) frowns on revenge. It enjoins Muslims to repay evil with goodness.  

We call for a peaceful world. We must make the world safer. We appeal for a halt to the shedding of blood. Violence does not build. It only has the capacity to destroy. The world’s present dilemma is that such destruction often goes beyond the imagination of authors of violence.

Finally, MURIC calls on the youth around the world to eschew violence and avoid extremist groups. We urge parents to watch their children closely and purge them of extremist and violent propensities.

Professor Ishaq Akintola,
Muslim Rights Concern (MURIC)

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